Teenage female characters are sexual fodder for broadcast network TV series, especially comedies, according to an advocacy group’s new study. An examination of 238 sitcoms and dramas airing during four weeks in 2011 and 2012 found a third of the episodes included content that “rose to the level of sexual exploitation” of females, according to the Parents Television Council report released Tuesday. The likelihood that a scene would include exploitation increased when a teen girl was involved, the report found, as did the odds that a show would try for a laugh: Girls were more likely to be the target of sexually exploitive jokes than adult women, 43 percent as compared to 33 percent. The instances cited by the report varied widely, from an adolescent boy and girl playing strip poker in an episode of “Glee” to jokes spun off the topics of sexual violence, harassment and trafficking, according to the group’s researchers. “At what point in time is it OK to laugh at sexual trafficking or rape?” council President Tim Winter said. The PTC said its study relied on a United Nations’ definition of sexual exploitation as involving abuse of a position of vulnerability, power, or trust for sexual purposes including profiting financially, socially or politically.

via Study: TV’s female characters are sexual targets – San Jose Mercury News.